Saving Pets by Sharing Pictures #FuelTheCure

If you have been around MoscatoMom long, you know that I am a huge animal lover. If you ask me, no home is complete without a handful of fur babies and a measurable layer of pet hair that has to be vacuumed daily. So when I heard about this amazing fundraiser helping fur babies in need, I knew I had to help spread the word.

zuke

Zuke’s, a natural pet treat company comprised of the most passionate pet lovers you’ll ever meet, is hosting a fundraising initiative for pets with cancer this May and June.After his beloved chocolate Labrador Zuke passed away from cancer, Zuke’s founder Patrick Meiering (shown below) helped start the DCCFund in 2007. The non-profit organization is dedicated to supporting cancer prevention and providing pet parents in need with financial assistance for cancer-related treatments and care. Zuke’s donates a portion of every treat sold to the DCCFund and with its customers’ help have raised over $250,000. For everyone who tags a photo of their dog in action and loving life with both #FueltheCure and @ZukesPets, Zuke’s will donate $5 to The Dog and Cat Cancer Fund (DCCFund) Their goal is to raise $10,000 and most importantly raise awareness about canine and feline cancer.

zukes pets

The DCCFund provides financial assistance to pet parents who can’t afford treatment for their beloved dog or cat. Zuke’s support of the DCCFund is just one way they are committed to helping dogs and cats stay healthy and active. Zuke’s donates a portion of every treat sold to the DCCFund and with your help have raised over $250,000.

Get involved – share a picture of your furbaby and tag Zuke’s Pets and use the hashtag #FuelTheCure.  We did!!

I Can Read: Reading with Chuck E. Cheese

I am so excited to share a fun new campaign just in time for the Summer! Chuck E Cheese has teamed up with HarperCollins Publishers – the second largest book publisher in the world – for weekly I Can Read: Reading With Chuck E. events at all Chuck E. Cheese’s locations in May and June! Every Tuesday at 11am and 6pm Chuck E. Cheese and a cast member will lead the reading of the selected book of the month. Last week I joined some girlfriends and their little and headed to Chuck E Cheese for lunch. The Teen had an orthodontist appointment so she got to tag along… and I believe had just as much fun as the kids did.

reading with chuck e

For the month of May, HarperCollins has chosen Danny and the Dinosaur, the story of a boy who meets a prehistoric playmate in a museum. The dinosaur comes to life and the two friends encounter extraordinary adventures together. I had never heard of that book before, so I enjoyed piling up with the kids to listen to the story. Chuck E began sitting next to his team member friend, but about half way through he came to sit with us… the kids absolutely loved it!

chuck e cheese reading program

In June, Reading with Chuck E. will feature A Green Green Garden. Little Critter and his family plant and grow their own fruits and vegetables to prepare a delicious dinner. Both books are members of the “I Can Read!” series, the premier line of beginning readers books that are approved for all ages.

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In addition to weekly reading sessions at the restaurant, Chuck E. Cheese’s wants to reward young bookworms for reading everyday by providing 5 free tokens to guests that keep track of their reading through the Reading Rewards Calendar, which can be downloaded from chuckecheese.com. Once the calendar is full, guests can bring the print out in store to redeem their prize.

reading calendar

After the kids were finished reading we ordered lunch and played games… for nearly three hours. Hey, we are all big kids really right? And with literally dozens of games to choose from, even the biggest kids can find themselves entertained for hours. The place was super clean and the food was really really good – we all had a great time.

chuck e cheese

Even Chuck E stayed and hung out in the game room with all of us playing games and playing peek-a-boo around the game machines. (It’s tough to hide behind stuff with ears like those…) He even joined in with some of the arcade games and I have to admit, when I turned the corner and saw this, I knew it was a mouse after my own heart.

chuck e

If you are looking for a super fun way to beat the heat this Summer, head to your local Chuck E Cheese for the I Can Read program! It’s a great way to spend a day just relaxing and being a kid.

*GIVEAWAY*

Ready to win? Two lucky MoscatoMom readers will win the set of two books being featured by Chuck E Cheese and HarperCollins to enjoy at home any time you want! You can enter using the RaffleCopter widget below! Good luck!

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Kick Off Your Summer – FREE Cookbook From Kraft!

Memorial Day Weekend is the unofficial kick off to Summer and what better way to start your Summer vacation than with a brand new cookbook full of recipes to keep your tastebuds happy all Summer long! Kraft foods has put together their best Summertime Favorites in this free cookbook available now! Click on the image below to immediately download your copy! (You don’t even have to enter your email or anything!) 

Midge scrolled through the cookbook already and has requested we make the Philadelphia Fruit Pizza -pronto! If you have never had this before – I highly recommend it. It is super simple, easy for kids to help with (if you can table your OCD and let them) and “delicious” doesn’t even begin to describe it! I had it the first time at a Pampered Chef party and we literally were using our thumbs to get the crumbs to make sure none was wasted – it was THAT good.

philadelphia fruit pizza

I am also super excited to make the Kraft Steakhouse Potato Salad. The Teen’s Sweet 16 is going to be spent tubing down the Blackwater River and I was looking for a way to cook potato salad and package it in individual containers for all of the party attendees without breaking the bank on containers… these LOOK as amazing as they sound like they would TASTE!

kraft steakhouse potato salad

Click below to download your own Kraft Kick Off Your Summer Cookbook!

Disclosure: This ad is sponsored post by Lunchbox.

Make Bathtime More Fun with SoapSox!

I remember vividly a complete and total meltdown by The Teen as a toddler when I told her that her beloved “BearBear” was not allowed to bathe with her after they had played outside all day. The wailing that he “needed a bath” (which was entirely true) rang through the house, followed by cries when she put it together that he would actually get that bath from the very scary washing machine. I eventually gave in, allowed BearBear to get in the tub with her… which only resulted in wails at bedtime when he was still too wet to go to then go to bed with her an hour later.

This is why Moms need wine sometimes.

When I was approached a few weeks ago about reviewing SoapSox – the next generation of washcloths for kids – I happily accepted, remembering that day and wanting to save every other Mom from that same fate.

soap sox

SoapSox are soft, cuddly characters that hold your bar or liquid soap and suds up for bath time fun. Simply “feed” your favorite SoapSox critter with your favorite soap, wet with warm bathwater, squeeze a few times and voila! Your soapy pal is ready for a good scrub down! With nine SoapSox to choose from, every child will find a favorite!

Check out how they work in this awesome video:

We received a collection of these little guys and I have to admit… they are adorable. And even though my girls are past the wailing about bath time stage, that didn’t stop either of them from arguing over who was going to take a bubble bath with their SoapSox first. Midge chose the purple hippo “Harper” while The Teen wanted “Scorch” the dragon. They told Mike he should keep the Shark on his desk because of his love for sharks and SharkTank – which SoapSox was featured on last season. In fact the shark’s name is “Tank”- which we thought was absolutely awesome.

soapsox harper

Every SoapSox is “stuffed” with an antimicrobial sponge on the inside and covered with soft yet durable polyester terry cloth on the outside so it can easily be popped in the washer and dryer. SoapSox also can provide a sense of security for children who are reluctant to take a bath.  A child can take their SoapSox critter with them anywhere—from playtime, to bath time to nighttime.  They never have to be apart!  SoapSox also won the 2014 Innovation Award from JPMA. 

SoapSox can be found at Nordstrom, Buy Buy Baby, Bed Bath & Beyond and many other stores around the country and retail for $14.95.  For more information visit www.soapsoxkids.com.

*GIVEAWAY*

Want to win your very own SoapSox? Only lucky MoscatoMom reader will receive a free surprise SoapSox to make bathtime easier in your household! Just enter using the RaffleCopter widget below! Good luck!

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BrainChase: The Cure For Summer Brain Drain

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We are down to just two weeks left of school here at the Moscato Household. I am fairly confident that I am even more excited about Summer than the girls are. No alarm for three months?!! Yes, please! But what I am already finding interesting is how different the girls school lives are right now. The Teen has been doing more studying than I have seen her do all year getting ready for the finals and EOCs that seem to be happening daily. It’s like there is one big final push right here at the end of the year. Midge on the other hand… is watching movies and having Field Day. Now, I am not complaining – goodness knows I adore Midge’s teacher this year and equally adore the school… it just worries me that they seem already kinda “done” learning and I worry about the “Summer Brain Drain” starting already. That is why I am counting down the days until June 22nd when the Brain Chase Summer Learning Challenge begins!

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Brain Chase is a five week Summer Learning Challenge that keeps kids engaged and entertained while making sure to keep key skills like reading, writing, and math in the forefront of their minds! You’ve heard the phrase “use it or lose it” right? Well did you know that kids can lose up to two months of learning during the summer? Talk to any teacher and they will tell you the entire first month of the new school year is trying to get kids to remember what they forgot over summer vacation. With Brain Chase kids complete fun challenges in as little as one hour a day to keep all of those vital skills active.

brain chase dashboard

This year’s challenge is titled Brain Chase: The Sunstone of Cortés. Challengers will participate in five weekly challenges to find the treasure of the SunStone. You can check out their cool interactive dashboard for a sneak peek in to what is to come. Check out the official trailer to meet the characters and learn more about the Brain Chase Challenge:

But, this isn’t just fiction—there’s a real treasure buried somewhere on Earth. It’s a gold-plated, mechanical device hiding a key to a nearby safety deposit box containing a $10,000 college scholarship fund. Each day challengers will have the chance to log in and pinpoint where they think the buried treasure is based on the clues from the chase. If you’re the first to solve the riddle within a two-mile radius, we’ll fly you and a chaperone to the treasure site to claim the treasure.

the sun stone

As a bonus, all Brain Chase registrants will now have the opportunity to choose to participate in a language module as part of their online academic work. The language module, if selected, will replace the writing module. Students will be required to complete 2 lessons (a total of a little over an hour) each week in order to fulfill their language requirement and unlock the next episode. Students will be allowed to choose from 30+ languages when they register, and will have a week at the beginning of the program in which to switch languages if they prefer. Rosetta Stone will be part of the all-inclusive pass to the best online curriculum providers that comes with Brain Chase registration.

teachersBrainChase is excited to reward teachers for their help in spreading the word about their Summer Learning Challenge as well. No one knows how bad Summer Brain Drain is more than a teacher, so BrainChase is offering a referral program for teachers to help them earn school supplies for the upcoming school year. Free school supplies plus a lack of brain drain?!! Sounds like the recipe for a great start to the school year! Check out the Teacher Referral Program here.

Midge is already registered and could not be more excited about joining in the Brain Chase Challenge. You can enroll your children now to secure their spot. Regular pricing is just $199 but Brain Chase has a new Premium Package which includes the Brain Chase registration plus a Brain Chase-branded adventure backpack, a Brain Chase t-shirt and Sunstone of Cortés patch! Each challenger will receive awesome adventure items to help with the chase as well.  Remember our seeds…

brain chase

Check out BrainChase.com to register and follow them on Facebook and Twitter for more clues as the start dates get near!